Operation Safe Surf for Parents
Internet safety is rapidly becoming one of the toughest issues facing parents today. As Pennsylvania's top law enforcement officer, the Office of Attorney General has made it a top priority to guard children against sexual predators, creating the Child Predator Unit to investigate and capture online child predators before they strike.
As part of this effort, the Office of Attorney General kicked-off an Internet safety program called "Operation Safe Surf," designed to help educate not only kids and schools about Internet safety, but to also show parents how they can help keep their children safe online.
Children are growing up in a digital age and spend a great deal of their time online - instant messaging, researching and shopping. And, while these are all great tools, they need to be used wisely. Children are being targeted by online predators at an alarming rate, so it is critical for us to help them learn how to protect themselves while still enjoying all of the benefits of the Internet.
How can parents best talk with their children about Internet safety? Open the lines of communication. Not surprisingly, many kids are more adept at using a computer and the Internet than their parents. Talk to your kids to find out what they are doing online. The most important thing to remember is that it is okay to ask your kids questions. What are they doing online? What types of sites do they visit? To whom are they talking? Do they have a profile on a social networking site like MySpace? If so, ask them to show you the site. Have they posted photos of themselves on a blog or personal webpage? Remember it's not being nosey - it's being a parent.
Operation Safe Surf provides parents with resources and tools to use as they address many of these issues with their children. We have partnered with national leaders on Internet safety to provide the latest information on the topic.
The information below is designed to help educate you about important Internet safety information and resources available to parents. Should you have any questions about the materials, or would like to request a speaker please contact the OAG Education and Outreach Office at firstname.lastname@example.org or 1-800-525-7642.